Supply guaranteed despite shortages

Cornwall Glass has said it expects to be able to guarantee IGU supply to its established customer base in the face of global shortages in the supply of laminates.

With two of the UK’s three float glass manufactures already limiting supply of laminated products, Mark Norcliffe, joint managing director of Cornwall Glass Manufacturing, said that the IGU sector faced a summer of uncertainty.

“We’ve seen massive demand for laminate glass from our own sector, which has placed pressure on supply. At the same time supply has been disrupted by reduced manufacture of PVB resins, particularly by a single US manufacturer, and the supply that has existed has been swallowed up a resurgent automotive industry

“This created significant pressure on supply at the end of [April], which we expect to continue for the next three months at least,” he said.

“We have been working closely with Saint Gobain, our main supplier, and we are confident that we will have enough product to continue to meet reasonable customer demand, but it is tight and for much of the industry I believe it’s going to be very bumpy in the months ahead.

“The challenge that we and everyone else has, is that laminates have become an almost default specification in home improvement and newbuild since Part Q. Lower availability of PVB means that those products which are reliant on it – security glass but also acoustic laminates – are going to be in short supply.

“Until that is resolved, although we will consider working with new customers, our priority will by definition be those customers who we have an established relationship with.”